Expect Reggie Bonnafon to be behind the ballsnapper when the University of Louisville football team takes on Wake Forest Saturday. Will Gardner is on crutches, hasn’t practiced this week.
Seemed to be just a matter of time for Bonnafon when it became evident that Gardner has had issues moving his team’s offense . The porous offensive line wasn’t helping him much, but his lack of mobility was obvious and may have been a factor in the injury that sidelined him.
What the offense needs right now is a more resilient quarterback, with the instincts and speed to counter the constant blitzes that will be thrown at UofL by opposing defenses. Whether Bonnafon is that person remains to be seen, but he exhibited those qulaities during his senior year in high school. Trinity consistently plays a good schedule against strong competition, a factor that will work in his favor.
In his first high school start at quarterback against a strong Tennessee Ensworth team, Bonnafon completed 16-of-24 passes for 215 yards and a touchdown in a nationally televised game. Later, against Indianapolis Carmel, he competed 18 of 22 passes for 283 yards and two touchdowns while adding another 62 yards on 15 carries for an additional two scores on the ground.
In first game at UofL, Bonnafon rushed for two touchdowns and passed for another against an inferior Murray State team. However, he was ineffective in the loss against Virginia the follow week, unable to move the ball at all for two quarters. His first game against a serious oppoment had to be a real eye opener.
Two days later his father died, a man who probably saw every single game in which his son had participated. Reggie said last week he was dedicating his career to his father and he will be focused. A whole new perspective for him, new ways of looking at things, knowing what his dad wanted for him.
“When I come back, I’m coming back harder than ever,” Reggie told the Courier-Journal. “I’ll play for him.”
Coach Bobby Petrino has yet to confirm that Bonnafon will start, but he’s probably just keeping the Wake Forest coaching staff guessing. The guess here is that Petrino may have already made a decision to go in another direction before the game ended at Florida International.
The offensive linemen, who were unable to protect Gardner, is hearing all the criticism, much of which has been coming from the coaches during a grueling week of practice.Protecting the quarterback is their No. 1 responsbility and they’ve already lost one. They had better be highly motivated or they risk having every week be hell week the rest of the season.
Plenty of motivation to go around if Reggie Bonnafon makes his starting debut.